Components of the antioxidant defense system and their plant sources – Part 1
In the last couple of weeks, I have presented the three groups that make up the antioxidant defense system. These are the vitamin, enzyme and elements [trace elements] defense systems. I have also written about their plant sources, which as we can see are more predominant than animal sources.
One important information that we get from this kind of arrangement is that the human diet as given by GOD the Creator, is mainly plant based. Also, as we study this diet, we come to realise that it is a diet that should be eaten raw or steamed so as not to destroy the active ingredients in the plants with excessive heat if boiled in water or cooked in soups.
Today, I want to take a close look at these plants from which these components of the antioxidant defense system are sourced from so that we can begin to deliberately consume such plant diet as a means of boosting our immune systems.
The components of the antioxidant defense system are highlighted in this article. After each component, we have the plant sources laid out. A close look at these sources helps us to identify the particular plant source. With information such as this, we can decide what kind of plant component to in a bid to boost our antioxidant defense system to help in neutralizing free radicals and prevent diseases as serious as cancer. In other words, eating this diet regularly and purposefully can help to prevent diseases and even cure some on the long run.
As we can see, the plant sources of all the components of the antioxidant defense system can be summarized as follows: vegetables, fruits, grains, seeds, sea foods, oils and to a lesser extent organ meat and beef.
Sources of trace minerals
Copper: Cocoa, whole grains, wheat bran, sunflower seeds and cashew nuts. Others are seafood and organ meat.
Zinc: Oysters, red meat, groundnuts, almonds, chickpeas, dairy products, such as milk and cheese.
Magnesium: Leafy green vegetables, whole grains, Brazil nuts, almonds, hazelnuts, avocadoes, bananas, black eyed Peas, lima beans and soybeans.
Iron: Leafy green vegetables, soy foods, meat, chicken, eggs and beans.
Selenium: Tuna, shrimps, salmon, sardines, cod, chicken, turkey, asparagus, barley and brown rice. Other sources are flaxseed, spinach, cabbage, garlic and broccoli.
Summary of sources of vitamins and trace minerals that are found in the antioxidant defense system
Plant sources of vitamin E include;
Vegetables: spinach, kale and collard greens.
Nuts: almonds, pistachios, pecans, walnuts and hazel nuts.
Seeds: pumpkin seeds, sunflower seed and sesame seed.
Seafood/fish: shellfish, shrimps, cray fish, oysters, salmon and herring.
Oils: olive oil, wheat germ oil, sunflower oil, grape seed oil, canola and corn oil.
Sources of Vitamin C:
Fruits: citrus fruits, tomatoes, strawberries, pawpaw and mangoes.
Vegetables: Brussels sprouts, lettuce, spinach, potatoes and cruciferous vegetables such as cabbage, cauliflower and broccoli. Red and green peppers also contain Vitamin C.
Sources of vitamin A include:
Vegetables: carrots, dark green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale, Mustard greens, Collard greens, Turnip greens, beet greens and broccoli. Other types of vegetables that are high in vitamin A are Romaine lettuce, pumpkin, sweet red, yellow and green peppers and peas.
Fruits: mango, paw paw (papaya), cantaloupe melon, dried apricots and squash.
Fish/seafood: tuna, mackerel and oysters.
Oils: cod liver oil.
The three enzymes of the enzyme antioxidant defense system are produced in the body. Deficiencies of these enzymes are rare.
Here are some examples of leafy green vegetables as mentioned above.
Romaine lettuce, spinach, Swiss chard, kale, mustard greens, cabbage, broccoli and collard greens. Others in this group are turnip greens, watercress, dandelion and chickweed.
These vegetables and more are packed full with vitamins and mineral antioxidants. There are other minerals in them together with chlorophyll that alkalizes the system and fibre that keeps the colon in perfect health all the time. The leafy green vegetables can be eaten raw in salads, steamed or lightly boiled and for optimal health.
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